Matheny School
Robert Schonhorn Arts Center 1999
Client:Matheny Medical and Educational Center
Project Category:Special Projects
Architect:Ford Farwell Mills Gatsch
Completion Year:1999
Location:Peapack, New Jersey
Capacity:300 seats
The Matheny School is a New Jersey approved private school for children with disabilities. At Matheny, children having a variety of developmental disabilities, physical challenges and complex medical conditions find a safe, supportive environment where they can reach their academic, social, vocational, and personal potential.

The student body includes individuals who have cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, and spina bifida. The committed staff, fully accessible physical facility, customized wheelchair design, and comprehensive program of training and therapy enable individuals to reach a remarkable level of success and personal achievement.

The performing arts center is a 300-position theatre, 100-positions of which are wheelchair accessible. So that family members can sit together, the wheelchair accessible positions are interspersed with conventional seating. The flexible design allows for different mixes of conventional and wheelchair accessible positions through the use of special retractable seating. Other design features include an oversized lobby and aisles, multiple entry points, and a ramped and tiered floor.

The design includes a fully-accessible scene shop which doubles as an arts access classroom, and barrier-free outdoor amphitheater.
2001 USITT Merit Award